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Thursday, May 23, 2024

PICTS Project to Boost Tourism Sector in Nkhata Bay

By Dorah Banda, MANA

Nkhata Bay Acting Tourism Officer, Wezzie Lwara said tourism industry in the district was making progress in terms of revenue capacity but has bemoaned poor road infrastructure to tourist’s places within.

She revealed this Monday that it was expected to make more than its annual contribution of K190 million if promoting investment and competitiveness in tourism sector (PICTS) is properly implemented.

“The tourism industry was growing in Nkhata Bay and it offers income. Itwas one avenue towards the district’s economic activities but what remains is the good road infrastructures,” Lwara said.

She emphasized that the intervention of promoting investments and competitiveness in tourism would help the sector to increase its revenue ability for Nkhata Bay district.

“The intervention of Promoting investment and competitiveness project (PICTS) will help us to have more tourists in the district because we will no longer have problem with accessibility to the destination areas hence more income,”the Officer added.

Lwara disclosed that the other challenge is lack of reliable water and air transport between Likoma, Usisya and Ruarwe areas.

“On the other hand if there can be reliable water and air transport between Likoma, Usisya and Ruarwe it can even boost tourism industry in the district and country as a whole,” she explained.

Lwara acknowledged that the office has not taken a step yet to deal with the challenges but her office was still making progress to make sure that their figured out.

“Tourism sector is not yet devolved, but as the office we are trying our best to find ways in which we can deal with these challenges so that we can be able to sustain our benefit,” she noted.

Nkhata Bay District Commissioner Rodney Simwaka said the District Council wasbenefiting from local revenues it collects from tourism operators.

“Currently, the district council is benefiting through local taxes that the operators are paying,” he said.

Simwaka said that the Council would want to expand the benefits from the industry through various facilities which would help to boost the economy of the district.

“In future, we are planning to have our own hospitality facilities like a water front entertainment Centre, a hotel at Chilundu peninsula but also a local tourism strategy to tap from the tourism potential that the district has, ” the DC pointed out.

“The strategy will include tourist’s areas like Nkhata Bay beaches and deep clean waters, Likoma, Mbamba bay in Tanzania and a game reserve which will form a triangle of treasure in the district,” he added.

PICTS is a project which is funded by African Development Bank (AfDB) with an aim of improving the tourism sector.

Currently, the project is constructing roads in lake shore areas to enhance transportation.

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